Surti Sev Khamni| Gujarati Sev Khamni Recipe

Surti Sev Khamni is a snack from the state of Gujarat, more particularly from the Surat region. It is a unique dish, made with chana dal, extremely delicious and dearly beloved to the people of Gujarat.

In today’s blog post, let us see the Gujarati Sev Khamni recipe.

My favourite Surti Sev Khamni, all decked up and pretty, ready to be indulged in!

What exactly is Surti Sev Khamni?

The city of Surat in Gujarat is famous not just for diamonds and textiles, but also for its food. Surat boasts of a robust cuisine all its own, along with a vibrant street food scene. Vati Dal Na Khaman, Rassawala Khaman, Undhiyu, Locho, Ghari, Dabeli and Sev Khamni are some popular dishes.

Sev Khamni is made with chana dal, soaked and then cooked with lots of garlic, ginger and chillies, some jaggery for sweetness, and soured with lemon. The soft and crumbly chana dal is served topped with a generous dose of sev, fresh coriander and pomegranate pearls. Can you imagine the burst of flavours? It is a dish that is filling and hearty, not too difficult to put together, almost healthy barring the sev and jaggery.

I love food that explodes with flavours in my mouth, so it is no wonder that I adore Sev Khamni. I remember Dad getting home these small packets of Sev Khamni on his way home from work, growing up in Ahmedabad – they would cause such a commotion in the family, and rightly so! It would be garlicky, fiery, mildly sweet and tangy, and simply beautiful. I learnt from Gujarati friends of mine how to put together the dish, a skill that I have honed over the years.

Is Sev Khamni the same as Amiri Khaman?

Often, Sev Khamni and Amiri Khaman are believed to be the same – one is passed off as the other. However, living in Gujarat for long has taught me that that’s not the case. These are two different dishes!

Sev Khamni, as I was saying, is made with soaked chana dal that is ground and cooked to a crumbly texture along with a few other ingredients. That’s the way it is authentically, traditionally, cooked in Surat.

Amiri Khaman, on the other hand, is nothing but refurbished khaman – leftover khaman crumbled up and served with a variety of toppings. The khaman may be an instant version, made with gram flour (besan), or a mix of semolina (sooji) and besan, or Vati Dal Na Khaman that is made with a fermented chana dal batter.

Sev Khamni and Amiri Khaman can look and taste quite similar, but there are subtle differences in the texture, taste and technique of both the dishes. But, hey, both dishes are absolutely delectable!

Gujarati Sev Khamni recipe

Here’s how Surti Sev Khamni is made.

Ingredients (serves 3-4):

1. 1 cup of chana dal

2. A 1-inch piece of ginger

3. 2 green chillies

4. 5-6 cloves of garlic

5. 1 tablespoon oil

6. 3/4 teaspoon mustard seeds

7. 2 pinches of asafoetida

8. Salt to taste

9. 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

10. 1/2 cup of milk, boiled and cooled

11. 3 tablespoons of jaggery powder or to taste

12. 2 heaped tablespoons of finely chopped coriander

13. Juice of 1 lemon or to taste


1. Fine sev, as required

2. Pomegranate arils, as required

3. Finely chopped coriander, as required


Left top and bottom: Steps 1 and 2, Right top and bottom: Steps 3 and 4

1. Wash the chana dal thoroughly under running water. Drain out all the water. Then, soak the chana dal in enough fresh water to cover it, for at least 3 hours.

2. When the chana dal is done soaking, drain out all the water from it. Transfer to a mixer jar. Grind coarsely, preferably without adding any water. If needed, add very little water for grinding. Keep aside.

3. Peel the ginger and garlic cloves. Chop the ginger and green chillies roughly. Transfer these to a small mixer jar.

4. Grind together the ingredients in the mixer jar to a paste, using very little water. Keep aside.

Top left and right: Steps 6 and 7, Centre left and right: Steps 8 and 9, Bottom left: Step 10, Bottom right: How the mixture looks when it is cooked and ready

5. Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Add in the mustard seeds and allow them to sputter. Add in the asafoetida and let it stay in for 2 seconds.

6. Reduce the flame to low-medium, and add in the green chilli-ginger-garlic paste, followed by the coarsely ground chana dal. Mix well, and cook for a minute.

7. Add salt to taste and turmeric powder. Mix well. Cook on low-medium flame for 4-5 minutes.

8. At this stage, add the milk to the pan. Mix well. Continue to keep the flame at low-medium.

9. Cover the pan and cook on low-medium flame for 3-4 minutes. Uncover in between to stir and ensure that the mixture is not burning at the bottom.

10. At this stage, add in the jaggery powder and mix well. Cover and cook on low-medium flame for 2-3 minutes more or till the mixture attains a dry but soft and crumbly texture. Switch off gas.

Left top and bottom: Step 11, Top right: The crumbly texture the mixture gets when it has cooled slightly, Bottom right: Surti Sev Khamni, ready to serve

11. Mix in the finely chopped coriander and lemon juice. Allow the mixture to cool down till it is barely warm, then the Surti Sev Khamni is ready to assemble.

12. To serve, crumble up the mixture gently and place some in serving bowls. Top with fine sev, finely chopped coriander and pomegranate arils as needed. Serve immediately.

Tips, tricks and variations

1. Sugar can be used in place of the jaggery powder I have used here. I prefer using jaggery powder. Adjust the sweetness as per personal taste preferences.

2. You may skip the garlic if you do not prefer it. Personally, though, I prefer it with loads of garlic – that’s the way I have grown up eating it.

3. You may top the Surti Sev Khamni with some finely chopped onions and grated coconut. I usually skip these.

4. You may use some sweet-sour tamarind chutney and spicy green chutney to top the Surti Sev Khamni. I usually don’t.

5. Adjust the number of green chillies you use depending upon personal taste preferences. The same goes for lemon juice.

6. Do not skimp on the coriander, pomegranate and fine sev. These are the three main pillars of a good sev khamni and need to be used generously. Use the freshest of coriander and pomegranate for best results. Use only the fine variety of sev – the thick variety doesn’t suit well. I have used store-bought fine sev here.

7. The milk adds a nice texture and taste to the Surti Sev Khamni. However, if you don’t prefer using it or want a vegan version, use water instead.

8. Do not grind the chana dal to a fine paste. For best results, keep the mixture coarse. Do not add too much water while grinding.

9. Cook the mixture till you get a soft, crumbly texture. Most of the moisture should evaporate, but the mixture should feel soft and not too dry. This is the perfect texture that one should aim for.

Looking for more Gujarati recipes? Check out my posts on Gujarati Khatti Meethi Dal, Gujarati Kadhi, Undhiyu, Dal Dhokli, Methi Na Gota, Dabeli and Handvo.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!


Undhiyu| Gujarati Mixed Vegetable Curry

For me, winter is incomplete without gorging on Undhiyu at least a few times. I grew up in an undhiyu-making South Indian family in Gujarat, and can’t not make it when all those glorious winter veggies are at their bountiful best. That’s so not done! We make a relatively healthy version, in a pressure cooker, as opposed to the way it is traditionally made. I’m here today to share with you all our easy recipe for Pressure Cooker Undhiyu.

This recipe was published first on my blog in the year 2020. It is now re-published with more step-by-step pictures and better instructions.

Delicious pressure cooker Undhiyu!

What is Undhiyu?

If you are wondering what on earth Undhiyu is, let me begin by telling you that it is a celebration of winter, of all the lovely vegetables that are in season in the cold months. Think yam, carrots, sweet potatoes, hyacinth beans, pigeon peas, fenugreek leaves…Undhiyu is a Gujarati dish, made using a mix of these winter vegetables.

Traditionally, Undhiyu is made in an earthen pot or matka – the veggies are stuffed with a fragrant coriander-coconut-peanut masala, then layered in the pot, then sealed and set upside down to cook in a sand-covered pit. The name of the dish comes from the process of inverting the pot for cooking – inverting is ‘undhu‘ in Gujarati, hence ‘Undhiyu‘. It is also referred to as ‘Matla Undhiyu‘, thanks to the way it is cooked in an earthen pot ‘matlu’ in Gujarati).It is sheer delight, this dish. It is so flavourful and hearty that it would make one fall in love with winter veggies, if they aren’t already.

For Gujaratis, Undhiyu is more than just a dish. It’s an emotion, as it is for me too. It is a popular accompaniment to pooris and phulka rotis in Gujarat, a must-have on the festival of Uttarayan.

About Pressure Cooker Undhiyu

The traditional method of making undhiyu is quite laborious and time-consuming. Moreover, these days, hardly anyone has access to a sand pit where one can cook! 🙂 With time, Undhiyu began to be cooked in a pan on the stovetop, but the process still remained tedious and tiring. This Pressure Cooker Undhiyu is a rather simple, much easier way of cooking the dish – a cheat’s version, if you want to put it that way.

Once you have the veggies chopped and some basic prep work ready, making the Pressure Cooker Undhiyu is a matter of minutes. I don’t stuff the vegetables with masala, but add it as is to the pressure cooker – works just fine! It needs very little oil, as opposed to the oodles that goes into making Matla Undhiyu. I don’t deep-fry the veggies, the way I have seen some Gujarati families doing. I do deep-fry the Muthiya or fenugreek-leaf dumplings that go into the Undhiyu, but you could make them in an appe/paniyaram pan if you want to cut down further on the amount of oil used.

How to make Undhiyu in a pressure cooker

Let’s get to the recipe for the Pressure Cooker Undhiyu.

This is a completely vegetarian and vegan preparation, suitable for those following a plant-based diet. It can also easily be made entirely gluten-free by avoiding the asafoetida used in the recipe.

Ingredients (serves 4-6):

  1. About 4 heaped cups of chopped veggies, like elephant foot yam, carrot, raw banana, cauliflower, hyacinth beans (See notes)
  2. 1 heaped cup of shelled beans (pigeon peas, hyacinth beans and green peas, mostly)
  3. Salt to taste
  4. 1 tablespoon oil
  5. 1 tablespoon sesame seeds (til)
  6. 1/2 teaspoon asafoetida
  7. 1/2 teaspoon carom seeds (ajwain)
  8. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  9. 3-4 tablespoons jaggery powder or to taste
  10. 4-5 green chillies
  11. 8-10 cloves of garlic
  12. A 1-inch piece of ginger
  13. 1/2 cup peanuts
  14. 1/2 cup fresh grated coconut
  15. About 1 cup finely chopped fresh coriander + some more for garnishing
  16. Juice of 1 lemon or to taste

For the muthiya:

  1. 1 medium-sized bunch of fenugreek greens (methi leaves), roughly 1-1/2 cups when chopped
  2. 1 cup of gram flour (besan)
  3. Salt to taste
  4. 2 pinches of asafoetida
  5. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder
  6. Red chilli powder to taste
  7. A fistful of fresh coriander
  8. 1/4 teaspoon carom seeds (ajwain)
  9. 1/2 tablespoon sesame seeds (til)
  10. 1-2 tablespoons jaggery powder or as needed
  11. Oil, as needed for deep-frying

For the garnishing:

  1. Freshly grated coconut, as needed
  2. Finely chopped fresh coriander, as needed


First up, prep the vegetables required for the Undhiyu.

1. Peel the carrot, potato, sweet potato, elephant foot yam and raw banana, then chop them into large pieces.
2. Remove the tops from the eggplants, and chop into large cubes.

3. Chop the cauliflower into large pieces.
4. Remove strings from the hyacinth beans and cut them off into halves.
5. Keep the shelled green peas, hyacinth beans and pigeon peas ready.

Next, we will prepare the masala for the Undhiyu.

1. Dry roast the peanuts on medium flame till crisp, taking care to ensure that they do not burn.
2. Let the peanuts cool down fully, then coarsely crush them in a mixer. Transfer to a large mixing bowl.
3. Add the fresh grated coconut and finely chopped coriander to the mixing bowl.
4. Peel the ginger and garlic cloves. Chop roughly. Remove the tops from the green chillies, and chop them roughly too. Grind the green chillies, ginger and garlic to a paste in a small mixer jar, using a little water. Add this paste to the mixing bowl too.
5. Use your hands to mix all the ingredients in the mixing bowl well together. The masala is ready.

Top left: The veggies, prepped and ready to go into the Undhiyu, Top right: The masala for the Undhiyu, Bottom left and right: Cooking the Undhiyu, steps 1 and 2

Now, we will start cooking the Undhiyu.

1. Take the oil in a large pressure cooker, and place on high flame. When the oil gets nice and hot, add in the sesame seeds, carom seeds and asafoetida. Let them stay in for a couple of seconds.
2. Add all the veggies to the pressure cooker. Layer the tougher root vegetables like elephant foot yam and sweet potato at the bottom, followed by potatoes, carrot and raw banana on top of them. Over this, place the vegetables that are easier to cook – cauliflower, hyacinth beans, brinjals and all the shelled beans.
3. Add salt to taste, turmeric powder and jaggery powder. Add about 1/2 cup of water from the sides. Place the masala we prepared earlier on top. At this stage, the cooker will be almost full to the brim. Don’t mix up the ingredients.
5. Close the pressure cooker, and put the weight on. Cook for 3 whistles on high flame. Let the pressure release naturally.

Top left and right: Cooking the Undhiyu, Step 3, Bottom left: The dough for the muthiya, Bottom right: The muthiya, being deep-fried

In the meanwhile, we will prepare the Muthiya.

1. In a large mixing bowl, add in the gram flour.
2. Add the finely chopped fenugreek leaves, salt, turmeric powder, jaggery powder, finely chopped coriander, red chilli powder, carom seeds, sesame seeds and asafoetida. Mix well, using your hands.
3. Use a little water to bind the ingredients into a soft, pliable dough that is not too dry.
4. Heat oil for deep frying in a heavy-bottomed pan. Let the oil get nice and hot.
5. When the oil is hot enough, form small oval shapes from the dough. Drop them into the hot oil, 2-3 at a time. Deep fry on medium flame till brown on the outside, taking care to ensure that the muthiya do not burn. Transfer to a plate when done.
6. Deep fry all the muthiya in the same way, without overcrowding the pan.

That’s how the Undhiyu looks, after cooking and the pressure is released

Lastly, we will prep the Undhiyu for serving.

1. When the pressure from the cooker has fully gone down, open it. Add in lemon juice and the muthiya we prepared.
2. Mix well, but gently. The Undhiyu is ready to serve, once the muthiya have soaked for 20-25 minutes. Serve with pooris, rotis or parathas after garnishing with freshly grated coconut and finely chopped coriander.

Tips & Tricks

1. Groundnut oil works best in Undhiyu. However, any oil of your preference can be used.

2. Adjust the quantity of green chillies you use, as per personal taste preferences.

3. Typically, a large quantity of coriander and generous amounts of peanuts, garlic and coconut are used to make the masala for the Undhiyu. Don’t skimp on these ingredients – they add a whole lot of flavour to the Undhiyu.

4. The vegetables typically used in making Undhiyu are – Hyacinth beans (avarakkai or sem ki phalli), shelled hyacinth beans (avarakottai or sem ke beej), eggplants (kathrikkai or baingan), carrot, shelled green peas (patani or matar) , shelled pigeon peas (thuvarai kottai or hare toor), elephant foot yam (senaikizhangu or suran), raw banana (vazhakkai or kachha kela), cauliflower, potato (urulaikizhangu or aloo), sweet potato (sakkarai velli kizhangu or shakarkand). You can use these in any proportion you like – they should totally be about 5 heaped cups when chopped and ready. You can use any variety of eggplants. Personally, I like using a generous quantity of shelled pigeon peas, hyacinth beans and green peas in Undhiyu.

5. The traditional Gujarati Undhiyu uses a local variety of flat bean (called Papdi) and purple elephant foot yam (called Ratalu). However, these two vegetables aren’t very easy to find everywhere. Hence, I do away with the purple yam completely and use regular hyacinth beans (sem ki phalli) in place of the Papdi.

6. I use a large 8-litre pressure cooker to prepare the Undhiyu.

7. Adjust the quantity of jaggery powder you use, as per personal taste preferences.

8. Pressure cook the veggies for 2-3 whistles, depending upon how firm/soft you want them to be. I prefer 3 whistles.

9. Adjust the quantity of fenugreek leaves you use in the muthiya, as per personal taste preferences.

10. Some people add the muthiya to the undhiyu just before serving. I prefer adding the muthiya to hot undhiyu, letting them soak for 20-25 minutes before serving.

11. The dough for the muthiya should be firm, but neither too dry nor sticky. If it gets too dry, add a bit of water. If it gets too sticky, adjust it with a little gram flour.

12. To test whether the oil for deep frying is hot enough, drop a little piece of the muthiya dough into it. If it  immediately starts to rise to the surface, the oil is just right – at this point, you should reduce the flame and start deep-frying the muthiya. If the dough doesn’t rise and settles down at the bottom of the pan, it indicates that the oil needs to get hotter.

13. You can layer the vegetables in the pressure cooker, too. Place some of the root vegetables at the bottom, spread a layer of the masala on top of them, then spread some more root vegetables over them. Again, another layer of masala, then one of the raw banana, cauliflower, eggplant and hyacinth bean pods. Another layer of masala on top, then the shelled hyacinth beans, green peas and pigeon peas. Finish with a layer of masala on top. You can add in the salt and turmeric powder on top – it gets evenly distributed when the veggies cook.

14. Some people add a mix of coriander (dhania) powder and cumin (jeera) powder to the Undhiyu. Some prefer adding a dash of garam masala. I usually do away with these ingredients.

15. Make sure you chop the veggies slightly large, so that they don’t get overcooked and too mushy

16. Any leftover Undhiyu can be refrigerated and used the next day.

17. If you can get your hands on green onion and garlic, do use them in the Undhiyu. I’m not a big fan of green onion and, hence, haven’t used it. We don’t get green garlic here in Bangalore, so I haven’t used it either.

Did you like the recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

Ponk Khichdi| Tender Jowar Khichdi

Ponk or hurda, a winter delicacy

Tender green jowar is a winter speciality in parts of Gujarat and Maharashtra. Called ‘ponk‘ in Gujarati and ‘hurda‘ in Marathi, the jewel-like immature grains of pearl millet are full of health benefits. The best way to eat them is raw or lightly sauteed, drizzled with some salt, lemon juice and sev – and they do taste absolutely fabulous when fresh and tender. That’s the mainstay of the ‘ponk parties’ that are often held in the fields of Gujarat and Maharashtra, this time of the year.

Tender jowar aka ponk or hurda, a winter speciality

Ponk Bhel and Ponk Vada are a couple of things the grains commonly find their way into in Gujarati households. I have had the pleasure of indulging in these delicacies on visits to Ahmedabad and whenever friends or family members managed to lug back parcels of ponk to Bangalore for me. Recently, though, I was thrilled to see it available at Native’s Basket, a store in HSR Layout, Bangalore, and had to go ahead and order some. This time around, I experimented with making some Ponk Khichdi, which turned out just awesome. The tender jowar was a treat to the tastebuds, and it took the simple khichdi to a whole new level.

Let me share with you all the way I prepared this delicious and nutritious Ponk Khichdi.

Delicious Ponk Khichdi!

How to make Ponk Khichdi

Here is how I went about it.

Ingredients (serves 4):

1. 1/2 cup rice

2. 3/4 cup toor dal

3. 1-1/2 cup ponk

4. 1 medium-sized onion

5. A 1-inch piece of ginger

6. 1 large tomato

7. 3/4 tablespoon oil

8. 1 teaspoon cumin seeds

9. 2 pinches of asafoetida

10. Salt to taste

11. 1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder

12. Red chilli powder to taste

13. 1/2 teaspoon garam masala or as per taste

14. 1/2 tablespoon jaggery powder

15. 1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh coriander

16. 2 tablespoons ghee


Top left, centre and right: Steps 1, 2 and 3, Below top right: Step 4, Bottom left, centre and right: The cooked ponk, rice and toor dal

1. Wash the rice thoroughly. Drain out all the water. Transfer the washed and drained rice to a wide vessel and add in 1-1/2 cup of fresh water. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high flame for 4 whistles. Let the pressure release naturally. Keep the cooked rice aside.

2. Wash the toor dal well, and drain out all the water. Transfer the washed and drained toor dal to a wide vessel. Add in enough fresh water to cover the toor dal completely. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high flame for 6-7 whistles or till the dal is well cooked. Let the pressure release naturally. Mash the cooked toor dal well and keep aside.

3. Wash the ponk well, and drain out all the water from it. Transfer the washed and drained ponk to a wide vessel. Add in about 2 tablespoons of water. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high flame for 2 whistles. Let the pressure release naturally. Keep the cooked ponk aside. Do not drain out the water it was cooked in.

4. Peel the ginger and onion and chop finely. Slit the green chillies length-wise. Chop the tomato finely. Keep ready.

Top left and centre: Steps 5 and 6, Top right and bottom left: Step 7, Bottom centre and right: Steps 8 and 9

5. Now, we will start preparing the Ponk Khichdi. Heat the oil in a heavy-bottomed pan. Add in the cumin seeds and asafoetida, and let them stay in for a few seconds.

6. Add in the finely chopped onion and ginger. Turn the flame down to medium. Saute on medium flame for about 2 minutes or till the onion is cooked and starts browning.

7. Add in the tomato now, along with a little salt and water. Cook on medium flame for about 2 minutes or till the tomato turns mushy.

8. At this stage, add in the cooked ponk and the water it was cooked in. Also add in the cooked and mashed toor dal. Continue to keep the flame at medium.

9. Add in salt to taste. Mix well.

Top left and right: Steps 10 and 11, Below top right: Step 12, Bottom right: Step 13, Bottom left: Step 14

10. Add red chilli powder to taste and turmeric powder.

11. Add in the garam masala and jaggery powder.

12. Add in the cooked rice and about 3/4 cup of water to adjust the consistency of the mixture. Mix well.

13. Let everything cook together on medium flame for 4-5 minutes. By this time, the mixture will start thickening. Switch off gas when the mixture has thickened but is still on the runnier side – it will thicken up further upon cooling.

14. Mix in the finely chopped coriander and ghee. Your Ponk Khichdi is ready. Serve hot with raita, curd or pickle.

Tips & Tricks

1. Make sure the toor dal is well cooked before adding it to the pan.

2. You can also stir-fry the ponk instead of pressure-cooking it. I prefer the latter.

3. Adjust the quantity of water you use, depending upon the consistency of the khichdi you require.

4. You may even add some vegetables to the khichdi – carrots, beans, green peas and the like. I decided to keep it simple, so did not add any.

5. Adjust the quantity of garam masala as per personal taste preferences. I have used home-made garam masala here.

6. Remember to stop cooking the khichdi when it is still runny. It thickens up further upon cooling.

7. You may make this khichdi without the rice. Personally, though, I think the rice gives some body and texture to the khichdi.

8. This is a completely vegetarian recipe, but not vegan (plant-based) because of the use of ghee. If you want to make this dish vegan, skip the ghee.

9. If you plan to make a gluten-free version of the khichdi, skip the asafoetida used in the tempering. Most Indian brands of asafoetida contain wheat flour, and are therefore best avoided when one is following a gluten-free diet. However, if you can find 100% gluten-free asafoetida, you could definitely use it.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

Dal Dhokli Recipe| How To Make Gujarati Dal Dhokli

Dal Dhokli is one of those dishes I did not take to immediately. I grew up not liking it, though my grandmother was known to make an extremely delicious version. Over time, though, I acquired a taste for it – even started loving it – and making it myself. In today’s post, I will be sharing a Dal Dhokli recipe, the way I have known it.

Gujarati Dal Dhokli

What is Dal Dhokli?

Dal Dhokli is a traditional Gujarati dish, a simple thing at heart. Wheat flour is spiced and bound into a dough, which is then rolled out into circles and cut into little diamonds (the ‘dhokli’). These diamonds are then cooked in a very flavourful lentil broth (the ‘dal’). There are, thus, two major components to this dish – the sweet-spicy-tangy-salty dal, which is similar to the Gujarati Khatti Meethi Dal, and the dhoklis. The combination of the two is very delicious, very filling, and very satisfying. It wouldn’t be wrong to call the Dal Dhokli a Gujarati version of pasta, me thinks. 🙂

The list of ingredients for the Dal Dhokli might seem long and the proceedure daunting, but it is actually not a very difficult dish to prepare. It might take a bit of practice to perfect, but that’s not a tall ask. I would urge you to try it out, if you haven’t already. It’s not just a delicious confection, but a very healthy one too, made using minimal oil. It is a complete meal in itself, which does not require any accompaniments. It is the perfect lockdown recipe too, requiring the bare minimum of ingredients, though you can jazz it up with more vegetables if you want to.

Dal Dhokli Recipe| How To Make Gujarati Dal Dhokli

Here is how we make it. My grandmother learnt how to make Dal Dhokli from her Gujarati neighbours, back when we were living in Ahmedabad. The recipe passed on to my mother, and then to me. While this recipe is very, very close to authentic, I have also outlined in the ‘Tips & Tricks’ section how to make it even more traditional.

I had put up a straight-from-the-heart post about making Dal Dhokli on my Instagram feed some time ago, and many readers were interested in the recipe. So, for all of you lovely folks out there, here’s the recipe!

Ingredients (serves 4):

For the dhokli:

1. 3/4 cup wheat flour + more as needed for dusting

2. Salt to taste

3. 1/2 teaspoon red chilli powder

4. 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

5. A pinch of asafoetida

6. 1/4 teaspoon carom seeds (ajwain)

7. 1 teaspoon oil

For the dal:

1. 1/2 cup toor dal

2. 2 tablespoons raw groundnuts

3. A small lemon-sized ball of tamarind

4. 1 medium-sized tomato (optional)

5. 3-4 green chillies (optional)

6. 1/2 tablespoon oil

7. 3/4 teaspoon mustard seeds

8. 2 pinches of asafoetida

9. Salt to taste

10. Red chilli powder to taste

11. 1/4 teaspoon turmeric powder

12. 1 tablespoon jaggery powder or to taste

13. 3/4 teaspoon garam masala or to taste

14. 1 tablespoon finely chopped coriander


Top left and right: Steps 1 and 2, Centre left and right: Step 3, Bottom left: The dough for the dhokli is ready and resting, Bottom right: Step 4

1. Soak the tamarind in a little boiling water for at least 15 minutes, for it to soften. Let it cool down completely.

2. Next, we will cook the toor dal and groundnuts. Wash the toor dal thoroughly and drain out the water. Take the washed and drained toor dal in a wide vessel and add in just enough water to cover it completely. Inside the vessel, place a small bowl with the groundnuts and about a tablespoon of water. Place the vessel inside a pressure cooker. Pressure cook on high flame for 7-8 whistles or till the toor dal is completely cooked. Let the pressure release naturally.

3. Now, we will prepare the dough for the dhokli. Take the wheat flour in a large mixing bowl. Add in the salt, turmeric powder, red chilli powder, carom seeds and asafoetida. Adding water little by little, bind everything into a soft dough, similar to roti dough. When done, add a teaspoon of oil to the dough and knead for a couple of minutes. Let the dough rest, covered, till we are ready to use it.

4. Prep the tomato and green chillies now, if using them. Chop the tomato finely. Slit the green chillies length-wise. Keep these ready.

Top left: Step 5, Top right and centre left: Step 6, Centre right, bottom left and right: Step 7

5. When the soaked tamarind has completely cooled down, extract all the juice out of it. You may use water as needed to help with the extraction. Filter out seeds and impurities, if any.

6. When the pressure from the cooker has completely gone down, get the cooked toor dal out. Mash it well. Keep the cooked groundnuts aside.

7. Next, we will prepare the dhokli. Take a small ball of the dough, dust it with wheat flour, and roll it out into a thin circle (like a roti). Make sure that the dough is rolled out evenly and thinly; only then it will cook easily and the dish will taste lovely. Now, use a pizza cutter or knife to cut the circle into small diamond-shaped pieces. Collect the pieces in a plate.

Top left: Step 8, Top right and centre left: Step 9, Centre right: Step 10, Bottom left and right: Steps 11 and 12

8. Use all the dough to roll out thin rotis, in a similar manner, and cut them up into little diamond shapes. Collect all the little pieces in the same plate – these are your dhokli. Keep these covered till further use.

9. Now, we will prepare the dal. In a large vessel, heat the oil. Add in the mustard seeds and allow them to sputter. Add in the asafoetida, cooked groundnuts and slit green chillies. Let these ingredients stay in for a couple of seconds.

10. Next, add the chopped tomato to the vessel, if using. Also add in a little water and a bit of salt. Cook on high flame till the tomato turns mushy.

11. Add the tamarind extract to the vessel. Cook for 3-4 minutes or till the raw smell of the tamarind goes away.

12. Now, add the cooked and mashed toor dal to the vessel. Add salt to taste, turmeric powder and red chilli powder, along with 1-1/2 to 2 cups of water. Mix well. The mixture should be watery at this stage, as it will thicken up later.

Top left and right, centre left: Step 13, Centre right: Step 14, Bottom left and right: Steps 15 and 16

13. Add in the jaggery powder and garam masala. Mix well. Taste and adjust salt and spices if needed. Cook the mixture on high flame till it comes to a boil.

14. At this stage, reduce the flame to medium. Add all the dhokli we prepared earlier, to the vessel. Give the mixture a stir.

15. Cook everything together for 12-15 minutes or till the dough is completely cooked. You will need to stir intermittently to prevent sticking to the bottom of the vessel. The mixture will have thickened up quite a bit now, but it should still be on the runny side – it will thicken even further. Switch off gas at this stage.

16. Mix in the finely chopped coriander. Your Dal Dhokli is ready. Serve it hot or warm.

Is this recipe vegan and gluten-free?

This Dal Dhokli is completely vegetarian and vegan (plant-based). However, it is not gluten-free due to use of wheat flour and asafoetida (which may contain wheat flour, to a lesser or greater extent).

This recipe is also free of onion and garlic.

#LockdownRecipes at Foodie Monday Blog Hop

This recipe is brought to you in association with the Foodie Monday Blog Hop.

The Foodie Monday Blog Hop is a group of passionate food bloggers who share recipes based on a pre-determined theme, every Monday. With India going through a terrible second Covid wave at the moment and lockdowns are in place in several states across the country, we decided to put together some #LockdownRecipes this week. This Monday, the group members will be showcasing simple recipes using minimal ingredients, and I couldn’t think of anything better than this Dal Dhokli.

Narmadha, the warm, friendly and talented author of Nams Corner, was the one who suggested the week’s theme. I especially love the heritage Tamilnadu dishes and kids’ special recipes on her blog. The Thalippu Vadagam recipe she shared a while ago has me intrigued – can’t wait to try it out!

Tips & Tricks

1. Make sure the rotis are rolled out evenly and very thin. Only then will they cook easily and the Dal Dhokli will taste delicious. The dough must be soft and pliable.

2. The traditional Dal Dhokli recipe uses kokum (Garcinia Indica) as a souring agent. I don’t always have kokum at home, so I prefer using tamarind instead. My grandmother would use tamarind in Dal Dhokli, and I continue to do the same. Adjust the amount of tamarind you use as per personal taste preferences. You may use lemon juice as a souring agent instead.

3. Adjust the quantity of water you use in the dal as needed. Remember that it needs to be quite watery (but flavourful) before adding in the dhokli. It will thicken as the dhokli cooks, but should still be quite runny when you finish. It thickens up quite fast.

4. Dal Dhokli is best served piping hot or warm. If you are making it ahead of time, do heat it up before serving. You might need to adjust the water, salt, spices and sourness before serving, if it has thickened up too much.

5. You will need a big vessel for the Dal Dhokli to cook. The vessel should not be overcrowded, and the dhokli should have space to move around. I use a large, 8-litre pressure cooker bottom to cook the Dal Dhokli.

6. Many Gujarati families do prepare the Dal Dhokli without the garam masala. I use it simply because my grandmother also used to, and I like it that way. Feel free to leave it out if you so prefer.

7. Make sure the toor dal is completely cooked before using it in the dish.

8. You may add vegetables like beans, carrot and green peas to the Dal Dhokli too, as Mayuri ji of Mayuri’s Jikoni kindly pointed out to me. I have most commonly had Dal Dhokli cooked with cluster beans (gavarphali) at the homes of my Gujarati friends – I absolutely love the flavour the beans add to the dish.

9. You may leave out the tomato and green chillies, and keep the Dal Dhokli plain and simple. Mayuri ji tells me that when no veggies or lentils are available, the dhokli can even be cooked in water, with the tempering, salt and spices added in. Isn’t this one super adaptable recipe, just perfect for the lockdown?

10. This is a no-onion, no-garlic recipe, but you may add them in if you prefer. Ginger paste can be added in as well.

11. You may cut out the dhokli as small or large as you prefer. I prefer keeping the diamonds really small – I feel the Dal Dhokli tastes better that way. A pizza cutter works best for cutting out the dhokli, but you may use a knife instead too.

12. Do not skip the jaggery used in the recipe, as it is an important component of the Dal Dhokli. The dish is supposed to be a mix of sweet, salty, spicy and sour. I have used jaggery powder here, instead of which you may use regular jaggery or sugar.

13. Here, I have prepared the dhokli first and then the dal. However, you may set the dal cooking first, simultaneously rolling out the rotis and adding them to the dal to cook.

14. You may add lesser dhokli to the dal than what I have suggested above. Any excess dough can be converted into Masala Rotis – roll it out into rotis and cook on both sides on a hot pan, with some oil drizzled around them.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!

Vegetable Sandwich| Bombay Sandwich

I write this post gripped in a wave of nostalgia, flooded with fond memories of the times when we were living in Ahmedabad. I love the diverse street food the city has to offer, and the fact that you could have a delicious meal in just about 30 rupees (I’m talking pre-2009). I’m not sure if things have changed now, but I am definitely sure that the city still continues to offer some brilliant street food that does not cost an arm and a leg. The recipe I’m going to share with you all today is for Bombay Sandwich or Vegetable Sandwich, the way I grew up eating it, something I dearly love.

Bombay Sandwich aka Vegetable Sandwich

What is a Bombay Sandwich?

It is a kind of sandwich made using vegetables, hugely popular in Mumbai. It’s available by the street-side and in several restaurants in Mumbai, and the same goes for Ahmedabad as well. Bombay Sandwich aka Mumbai Sandwich aka Vegetable Sandwich is a big-time favourite in Ahmedabad as well.

The Bombay Sandwich most commonly contains slices of cucumber, onion, tomato, boiled beetroot and potato – with so many veggies going in, this is a healthy sandwich I say! 😜 There’s butter and spicy green chutney going in too, which makes the sandwich super delicious. In Ahmedabad, the sandwich would be served without toasting, on a little square of newspaper, with tomato ketchup on top, over which thin sev would generously be drizzled. It would be served freshly made, with a flourish of chaat masala on top – a veritable treat in itself.

#CookInAJiffy with Foodie Monday Blog Hop

As a teenager in Ahmedabad, I remember making a hearty meal of two of these sandwiches, from Ajit’s, my favourite stall on Ashram Road. I would visit at least once a week, but now, I don’t know if the stall still exists. Anyhow, my visits taught me what an absolute breeze a Bombay Sandwich is to whip up, delish as it is. As I moved to Bangalore, I started making it myself and it was an instant hit with my extended family. I continue to make it often – it’s comfort food for when  I’m not feeling great, it’s an easy meal on days when I don’t really want to cook.

When #CookInAJiffy was announced as the theme for Foodie Monday Blog Hop this week, I instantly knew that I had to write about my beloved Vegetable Sandwich aka Bombay Sandwich. The Foodie Monday Blog Hop is a group of passionate food bloggers who share recipes based on a pre-determined theme, every Monday.

It was Sujata ji, the talented blogger at Batter Up With Sujata, who suggested the theme for the week. I love the innovative recipes Sujata ji comes up with, like these Semolina Blueberry Custard Cupcakes and Eggless Fresh Fruit Cake With Black Carrot.

How to make Vegetable Sandwich

Here is how to go about it.

Ingredients (makes 4 sandwiches):

1. 8 slices of bread

2. Salted butter, as needed 

3. Green chutney, as needed

4. 1 small beetroot 

5. 1 small potato 

6. 1 small English cucumber 

7. 1 small tomato 

8. 1 small onion 

9. A little chaat masala, to drizzle on the sandwiches

10. Fine sev, as needed (optional)

11. Tomato ketchup, as needed


1. Cut the potato into two halves. Transfer to a vessel, and add in enough water to cover the potato halves. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook for 4 whistles or till well cooked. Let the pressure release naturally.

2. Similarly, cut the beetroot into two halves. Transfer to a vessel, and add in enough water to cover the beetroot fully. Place the vessel in a pressure cooker. Pressure cook for 4 whistles or till well cooked. Let the pressure release naturally.

3. When the pressure from the cooker has completely gone down, peel the potato and beetroot. Cut both the potato and beetroot into  slices. Keep aside.

4. While the pressure is going down, prep the other veggies we will need to use in the sandwich. Chop the cucumber and tomato into thin slices. Peel the onion and cut into thin rounds. Keep aside. 

Left top and bottom: Steps 1 and 2, Right top and centre: Steps 3, Bottom right: Step 4

5. Spread some butter evenly on one slice of bread. Spread some green chutney evenly on the other slice. 

6. Place the bread slice with green chutney on a plate. Arrange a couple of slices of the boiled potato and beetroot on top of the green chutney. Then, spread a few slices of tomato, onion and cucumber on top of this. Drizzle some tomato ketchup on top of this and sprinkle a bit of chaat masala. (Avoid the ketchup and chaat masala if you are planning to use sev).

Top left: Step 5, Right top and centre: Step 6, Bottom right and bottom left: Step 7 (using sev)

7. Now, close the sandwich using the other bread slice which has butter spread over it. If you are using sev, drizzle some tomato ketchup over the sandwich. Sprinkle a generous quantity of sev over the ketchup and add some chaat masala. Serve the sandwich immediately.

The making of a Vegetable Sandwich, without sev

8. Prepare sandwiches from all the slices of bread, in a similar manner. Cut each sandwich into 4 pieces, and serve immediately.

Tips & Tricks

1. You can use any type of bread you prefer. Ideally, use a good-quality, whole wheat bread made without artificial colouring or flavouring agents, which is free of preservatives.

2. For best results, slice the vegetables thinly.

3. Use the fine variety of sev, popularly called ‘zini sev‘ or ‘nylon sev‘, for best results. It is a bit tough to find in Bangalore, though. The nylon sev from Garden is quite good, but it’s not easy to come across it. Make the sandwich without the sev for a healthier alternative – it still tastes awesome!

4. Here’s a detailed recipe for green chutney, the way I make it. I use the same chutney for my chaats and sandwiches. Keep the chutney thick for best results. A watery chutney will make the sandwich soggy.

5. I prefer having this Bombay Sandwich as is, without grilling. However, you may grill them if you so prefer.

6. Use the no-seed variety of cucumber – also called ‘English cucumber’ or ‘European cucumber’ – for best results.

7. The Bombay Sandwich is best consumed immediately after preparing.

8. I don’t cut off the edges of the bread slices. You may, if you prefer to do so.
9. You can make the sandwich sans onion, if you so prefer. The green chutney can also be made without onion and garlic, if you don’t prefer using them.

10. I have used Amul salted butter and home-made tomato ketchup here. You may use a store-bought version of the latter instead, too.

Did you like this recipe? Do tell me, in your comments!